Believe it or not, there has been a lot of controversy lately about how people cook rice. According to CNN, the "outrage" was a reaction to a clip Malaysian comedian Nigel Ng posted as one of his personas known as Uncle Roger.
It was a hilarious (and harmless) satire about the method chef Hersha Patel used to cook rice on the show BBC Food.
Uncle Roger DISGUSTED by this Egg Fried Rice Video (BBC Food) www.youtube.com
In the spilt screen video with Uncle Roger on the left and Patel on the right, the comedian critiques Hersha's process with comments such as she's "draining rice with colander! How can you drain rice with colander? This is not pasta!" While the video was meant to be a joke, it sparked an outcry of people taking offense to her culinary approach to cooking rice. CNN describes the reaction as a "firestorm of dismay and disbelief."
Leading up to rice-gate there have been instances of white chefs being accused of cultural insensitivity in their cooking methods. This tokenism is not considered overt racism, but is more of a subtle symbol represented by a cavalier nature of approaching the culinary traditions of a culture one might not fully understand or be sensitive to. A New York City restaurant had to close its doors less than a year from the day it opened due to a white chef proclaiming they would serve clean Chinese Food.
In lieu of the backlash sparked by the surprisingly controversial video, Nigel Ng and Hersha Patel posted a follow-up video to try and defuse any uprising spawned by the rice-cooking incident.
Uncle Roger Meet Egg Fried Rice Lady (@Hersha Patel) www.youtube.com
In the clip, Ng says,"Hey instagram! Guess who I just had dinner with?" The camera pans right to reveal Patel. Ng continues saying that in an upcoming post, "Uncle Roger" will be going to Patel's residence for her to cook rice the "right way."
It is official. We are offended by rice. It is a shame about the polar ice caps, racial injustice, the unexplainable logic to not wear a mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19, rising sea levels and a less than functional White House (which is the most polite way I can put that). But let me tell you, nothing grinds my gears more than someone who cooks rice in a non-traditional way. On that note, I am going to cook spaghetti and break the noodles in half before I put them in the boiling water. And because I am a rebel, I might let it cook so it is slightly beyond a dente. Take that, Italy.